Although Italino Iacomelli’s mother (Anni Cinove) died giving birth to him, he was a cheerful and happy child popular with the local women. In 1925 on a hot August afternoon, five year old Italino left his house in Piazza San Bartolomeo dell’Olivella to play. Watched by his father he ran to Carbonara Salita Gardens with his favourite toy, a hoop. (The hoop was propelled by stroking a one foot dowel or stick along the top). On his way there, the hoop landed between the legs of a young man. As Italino seemed undaunted when the man lifted him from the ground, his father was unconcerned until he saw Italino thrown from the 15 meter high wall.
The murderer named Louis was a man from an area of Genoa called Rivarolo. He had been previously hospitalized as suffering from a mental disorder. (The previous day he told police that he had thrown a girl from the Corso Mentana wall, but when he later recanted he was released). He began to flee but was caught and beaten by a group of onlookers.
Although Italino was seriously injured and died that evening, his father forgave the murderer. He died on 16 August 1925 and was buried in Staglieno Cemetery, Genoa, Italy. The town showed their grief as shops closed and thousands followed the funeral procession. He was laid to rest with his mother. His father Donatello Iacomelli (1889-1976) was later buried alongside his family.
The monument was designed by Italian sculptor Adolph Lucarini. The words Immaculate Lily are engraved on a plaque commemorating the tragedy that ended his short life.
Details from the historical archive of the newspaper Il Secolo XIX.